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Monday, May 23, 2005

Five favorite books: a book meme

PhillipedelermAmy tagged me with this book meme that is making a round on food blogs. It's, apparently, her devious way to get me to blog more often. I guess it works. ;-) Thanks Amy.

1. Total number of books I've owned
Far too many. Oh, wait, no, one can never have too many books. Just lots and lots, then.

2. Last book I bought

Two actually, Paris, l'instant and Quiproquo, both by Phillipe Delerm. I am on a Delerm kick at the moment, to work on my French and also because I adore his style. His prose is gorgeous and precise. He somehow manages to use absolutely no superfluous words, even while being meticulously descriptive. In many ways the writing reminds me of beautiful photography, in the way that it grabs on to a fleeting moment or something seemingly unimportant, and recounts each in painstaking details. Like an excellent photograph, his stories invite -no, demand- participation from the part of the readers.

Paris, l'instant
is a perfect book to keep in your bag while flaneuring in Paris. Its tiny size will add hardly any weight to your already heavy bag, loaded with your Plan, your travel journal, your digital camera, your hat, your umbrella, your bottle of Evian, and all things a true flâneur could ever need.

Plus, the subject matter is true to Phillipe Delerm's style, that is to say focusing on seemingly mundane matters, and even better this time since they are about all things Paris. Each story will direct your attention to minuscule yet astonishing delights that you may otherwise overlook.

A little tired from an aimless wander, look around for a nice spot at a sidewalk cafe, order un petit café or chocolat, take out your Paris, l'instant and let your eyes do the flaneuring while your feet take their well-deserved rest.

3. Last book I read
Des mots à la bouche : Festins littéraires. Found this little gem of a book at a little gem of a bookstore, the tiny Librairie Gourmande on rue Dante in the 7e. Des mots à la bouche is a collection of food writings from many well-known authors. It was lovely and I highly recommend it.

4. Five books that mean a lot to me

Are these supposed to be only cookbooks? I'm more than a little confused. There are a few books I could think of, some about food, some not, but they will have to do, I suppose.

Studies in Ethnomethodology
, by one of my academic mentors, Harold Garfinkle.
Reading that book with Harold gave me the eye, taught me to make no assumption and be meticulous in my observations. These skills have been useful in all the paths I've taken since in my life, and -perhaps most of all- this new journey I am embarking on.

The Man Who Ate Everything by the ever acerbic, ever hilarious Jeffrey Steingarten.
How to cook a wolf. My introduction to the soulful MFK Fisher.
Two books that taught me much about food writing.

Another food book that I have been absorbed in is Olivier Roellinger's new cookbook, Une Cuisine Contemporaine, if only because it reminded me of the beautiful few days we spent blissfully lost on the Brittany coast in April.

The final one -perhaps the most important one of all- has yet to be written. One day soon.

5. Which 5 people would you most like to see fill this out in their blog?

Louisa, Josh, Adam, Alder (so he could show us some interesting wine books), and Clotilde.

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» The Book Meme from On The Side
Pim tagged me on her site to do a book meme and now I will do so on the side! This should be fun... 1. Total number of books I've owned. My bookshelf is exploding with books, I have books [Read More]

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